Copywriting is a massively useful and valuable skill to have in any business, writes Robert Clay of Marketing Wizdom.
The million dollar copywriting tips I’m sharing with you today are so simple and easy to apply. Not one in a hundred people gets these things right.
But grasp these simple ideas and it can dramatically improve your marketing and advertising effectiveness. It can also give you a emphatic edge over most of your competition.
Copywriting Rule 1. Write as You Speak
My first rule of copywriting today is that you should write as you speak.
You’re bound to have seen those classic bureaucratic gems that go like this:
“We refer to your letter of the 23rd instant regarding your purchase of an XYZ Model Widget and wish to advise further developments on same …”.
Terrible! No one ever speaks that way these days … so why write that way? Be you. Write as you speak. And dare I say it, write from the heart.
It may be “just” a standard letter to you. But to your prospect or customer, it’s an important, personal communication from someone they trust. What you say and HOW you say it will affect their lives in a small way. If you write naturally and genuinely, you’ll affect them positively.
Copywriting Rule 2. Use “Point of YOU”
In a nutshell, here is the rule. It is a GOLDEN RULE.
This will make a PROFOUND impact on how your written communication is received. Yet amazingly, the technique is patently simple. It’s this:
Use far far more “you’s” in your correspondence than “we’s”.
Here’s an exercise you can do. Print out your existing letters, emails, brochures, direct mail pieces, web pages, video scripts and your company and social media profiles.
Get a couple of highlighter pens. A red one and a green one. Then go through each of the written pieces … and highlight with the RED pen every time you see the word “I”, “me”, “my”, “we” or “our” or “us” or the name of your company.
Then with the GREEN pen, highlight every time you see “you”, or “your” or the other person’s name, or the name of their company.
Now … COUNT the green and red highlights. If your communication is effectively written in what we call “Point of YOU” format, you’ll have about 5 GREEN highlights (you’s!) to every RED highlight (we’s).
If your ratio is the other way, YOU HAVE A PROBLEM! Your focus is on YOU, NOT the reader.
Simple. But effective, I guarantee you.
A typical short advert that doesn’t work:
ABC Copiers services and supplies photocopiers, printers and
scanners. We have been trading in our industry for more than twenty
years and pride ourselves in offering the latest office automation
technology with value for money and excellent local service.
This advert has 3 we’s and no you’s. All too often companies adopt a similar, ineffective, style for all correspondence.
How NOT to do Copywriting, from a bank:
Dear Mr Clarke
I write further to your recent conversation with my colleague, Adrian Berry, to introduce myself and the service I provide which I believe will be of interest to you.
I operate from Bank House where I act as Relationship Manager to various small businesses. My objective is to provide my customers with a specific point of contact for all their banking requirements.
In future, I would be delighted to act as your business Manager and would suggest that if you are agreeable to this, we meet up to put faces to names and consider any ways you feel I may be able to help you with your current business activities.
Unfortunately, as I do not appear to have your contact telephone number on file, perhaps you would like to call me to arrange a mutually convenient appointment.
I look forward to hearing from you in the near future.
With kind regards.
R P BELL
This letter has 17 “we’s” and 10 “you’s”. Should be more like 5 we’s and 22 you’s to be effective.
Let’s now look at the RIGHT way to do it.
Recruitment Letter — How Copywriting Should Be Done!
“Your Hassle Free Search & Selection Service… Providing Valued Managers who Share The Same Ethics and Drive as You”
For your company to perform as effectively as possible, you need to find the right people for senior and middle management. Not only do you need people with the right background and experience … but you deserve people who’ll be valued members of your team.
By discussing with you your individual requirements, you’ll experience a hassle free process on which you can depend. Your time will be left free to manage your business until your shortlist is ready for presentation.
Understanding Your Needs
Our first meeting with you will identify your exact requirements. Firstly we want to know as much about you as possible. A history of your company; the nature of your business; your markets; your strategy and culture – the challenges that face you in the future.
You’ll feel more secure knowing that we fully understand the purpose of the role; its dimensions; the primary relationships (internal and external); all the key result areas; the performance indicators; the decision making demands; and the key competencies and job challenges.
This extract from this prospecting letter has 22 you’s and 3 we’s. And it was VERY effective, opening many doors. I think you probably get the point.
Again, this is such a simple yet effective technique that instantly enables you to outsell, outsmart and outperform your toughest competition.
So those are some very simple yet powerful copywriting tips that really can be worth £ millions to you, in this, the seventh instalment from my new online seminar “10 ways to Outsell, Outsmart and Outperform Your Toughest Competition.”
Here’s a simple copywriting exercise for you:
- Print out your existing letters, emails, brochures, direct mail pieces, web pages, video scripts and your company and social media profiles.
- Next, get a couple of highlighter pens. A red one and a green one. Then go through each of the written pieces … and highlight with the RED pen every time you see the word “I”, “me”, “my”, “we” or “our” or “us” or the name of your company.
- Then with the GREEN pen, highlight every time you see “you”, or “your” or the other person’s name, or the name of their company.
- Now … COUNT the green and red highlights. If your communication is effectively written in what we call “Point of YOU” format, you’ll have about 5 GREEN highlights (you’s!) to every RED highlight (we’s). If your ratio is the other way, YOU HAVE A PROBLEM! Your focus is on YOU, NOT the reader..
Simple. But very effective, I guarantee you.
Please share your thoughts and add your questions to the comments below. I’ll try to provide as many answers as possible in my future online videos, seminars, workshops, masterclasses and blog posts.
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